10/24/09 — W. Christian bests Burlington Christian

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W. Christian bests Burlington Christian

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on October 24, 2009 11:53 PM

"Coach, take me out," said Greg Alexander.

"Why?" asked Wayne Christian coach Daryl Anderson.

"I've got a cramp," said Alexander.

Anderson called Alexander over to the sideline.

"Hold on a minute," said Anderson as Alexander took a sip of Gatorade.

It's a good thing Anderson waited.

Alexander delivered the game-winning goal in the first overtime session, and Wayne Christian escaped Burlington Christian 3-1 on a balmy, breezy Saturday afternoon.

The Eagles (17-5-1 overall) drew a quarterfinal-round date Tuesday at two-time defending state champion Greenfield in the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association 1-A boys' soccer playoffs.

Wayne Christian needed 70 minutes to recover from an eight-day layoff and Chase Darden's game-tying goal to avoid the opening-round upset. Darden scored off Tyler Mooring's assist after Mooring received a centering pass from the sideline.

"We haven't played since last Friday and most of the time it takes us the first half to get going," said Anderson. "We had a strong wind in our face (in the second half) and that hurt us a lot. For some reason, we didn't play possession ball, but kickball instead.

"I guess we had to get the rust knocked off."

Before overtime started, Alexander said he felt some cramping in his left leg and pointed behind his kneecap. Midway through the first 10-minute OT session, Alexander made his request of Anderson.

"I was told by his dad that if he could walk, let him play," chuckled Anderson. "I knew a cramp wouldn't hinder him and he could walk if off. Had he been hurt, that would have different and I probably would have pulled him out."

Alexander hustled toward the far post as Darden ran onto a loose ball inside the 18-yard box. Darden fired a cross to Alexander, who easily tucked the ball into the net and sent the Eagle fans into a frenzy.

"Switching the ball to the backside to the far post where the goalie isn't is what we've practiced all week," said Anderson. "They finally did it."

Darden supplied an insurance goal midway through the second OT and Wayne Christian remained perfect in five overtime outings this season.